“I’m full of joy, redeemed, set free” is the slogan being used by the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland for the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation in 2017. It is taken from the opening lines of a psalm-poem by the Rhineland cabaret artist and writer Hanns Dieter Hüsch (1925-2005).

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“It is good to have this special protection”

Ecumenical services are held four times a year for expectant parents in Essen under the heading “A blessing for new life”. They provide encouragement and support at a time which is often marked by mixed emotions.


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Reviving our common hope

Calls for joint action came at the end of Conference of the International Council of Christians and Jews. Speakers at the meeting of the umbrella organisation emphasised that with regard to co-operation, dialogue was begun in the immediate post-war years and is still in its early stages.


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The time is ripe for a solution

The Palestinian Bishop Munib Younan and the Israeli author Elan Ezrachi both grew up in Jerusalem. During a ‘fireside chat’ in Bonn they reported on their life in the divided city, on the unification in 1967 and their hopes for the future.


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Overcoming Reformation divisions

The World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC) has formally joined an ecumenical statement with Roman Catholics, Lutherans and Methodists aiming to overcome divisions between Protestants and Roman Catholics from the time of the Protestant Reformation.


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News ways of working with confirmation candidates

The basis for the idea of the “confi-starter” programme in the Emmaus Church in Aachen is that children will stay in the church so long as their interest in religious matters remains strong.  Over the period of a year a group of eight-year-olds get to know their church community and gather positive experiences, four years before they eventually start their formal confirmation classes.


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Witnessing together to faith in Jesus Christ

“I am overwhelmed by the joyful and warm atmosphere and by the huge interest in Christian issues of the day” stated OKR Barbara Rudolph, director of the department of theology and ecumenism in the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland. “Those who were here today saw ecumenism as a something to be taken as a matter of course”.


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Achieving peace

Military intervention is not necessarily the appropriate option, since it may well be possible to resolve conflicts through peaceful means. The first group of peacemakers trained by the Rhineland Church have been learning about what sort of models there are for this. They have then been passing on their knowledge to school children and youth groups.


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Concern for social justice

President Donald Trump is splitting American church congregations. Some support his policies while others protest against them – such as the United Church of Christ (UCC). During a recent visit to Germany Sigrid Rother, a German pastor serving as minister in a UCC congregation in Ohio, spoke about the concerns of liberal Christians.


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Every woman a priest

In the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland the fact of women in ministry is taken for granted. In some East European churches however, women’s ordination is still not possible or has even been withdrawn. How do those women who are affected deal with this?  At a meeting in Düsseldorf two women theologians exchanged their views with OKR Barbara Rudolph.


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Turning God’s grace into a living experience

At a festive service of worship in the Johanniskirche in Düsseldorf, President Manfred Rekowski inducted into office those members of the executive board of the Rhineland Church who had been newly elected by the 2017 Regional Church Synod, along with those who had been elected for a further term of service.


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“Passive tolerance is not enough!”

Federal German laws bear witness to tolerance in respect of gender justice. But society is lagging behind. Dr Claudia Janssen, Professor of Feminist Theology and Theological Gender Research at the Wuppertal/Bethel Theological College speaks about feelings of insecurity, fears and hate-mail. 


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Big breakthrough in reconciliation process

Representatives of Protestant Churches in Germany and Namibia met at the end of January 2017 in the city of Okahandja in Namibia, to commemorate the genocide committed by the German colonial troops against the Herero and Nama people during the years from 1904 to 1908.


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Opening of new Naomi Project

Going beyond the need for emergency aid, there is now a move to establish ongoing assistance for refugees who are stranded in northern Greece. This is being made possible with support from the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland. 


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“Being Church Ecumenically”

Three representatives of the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland, the Evangelical Church of Westphalia and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Essen signed a joint declaration and agreed on concrete forms of co-operation in local community development, as well as working together in a variety of different fields of church activity and areas of responsibility.


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President’s conclusion

At the closing Press Conference, President Manfred Rekowski gave a summary of what were for him the most important aspects of the Regional Synod 2017. 


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Newly elected church leadership

The new composition of the church executive board, with one substitute representative. Nine members were elected or re-elected. The remaining members did not stand for election according to the rules of rotation. Those elected will take up office at their induction on 5 March. 


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Welcome to our English website!

The Evangelical Church in the Rhineland is a church linked by a global network to many different international partners abroad as well as within Germany itself. From now on everyone will be able to get immediate information about us on our new English-language website, including information about our history, our structure, what we do and what we believe. 


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Speaking of a more cohesive society

Topics covered by the President in his Presidential Report included the Reformation anniversary, faith and ecumenism, continuing development of the church including new styles of local church congregations, social justice, terrorist attacks, and statements from the Alternative for Germany (AfD). 


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Full of joy, redeemed, set free and ecumenical

“I’m full of joy, redeemed, set free” is the slogan being used by the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland for the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation in 2017. It is taken from the opening lines of a psalm-poem by the Rhineland cabaret artist and writer Hanns Dieter Hüsch (1925-2005).


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